Showing posts with label All Star. Show all posts
Showing posts with label All Star. Show all posts

Monday, July 6, 2009

Monday morning bright side

The briefest of posts following a shittacular weekend of Blue Jays baseball. Accept this as my attempt to lift your (our) spirits.....

  • Roy Halladay and Aaron Hill - All Stars!
  • GBOAT hit streak - 22 games!
  • Adam Lind - straight raker!
  • Carlson and League - scoreless appearances yesterday! In the same game!
  • Handsome Raul Chavez - on fire!
  • Pitching staff escapes Sunday unscathed by injury!

Uh, yeah. These bullet points are degenerating rapidly. I'd better end it right here.

Go Jays?

Thursday, July 17, 2008

At least one Blue Jay got to start an All-Star Game

Even if Roy Halladay had to wait until the fourth inning to get into the MLB All-Star game, there's a slight amount of solace for us in seeing that Jays farmhand David Purcey got the start for the International League in last night's Triple-A All Star Game in Louisville.

Purcey pitched two strong innings, allowing no hits, no walks, and no runs while striking out three Pacific Coast Leaguers.

Though Purcey's two spot starts for the Jays this season have been something less than spectacular, he continues to pitch well for Syracuse and offers a glimmer of hope that there is something in the back closet for the Jays should the rotation's ranks continue to thin out through injuries and/or trades.

Purcey told a local Syracuse new channel that the experience of being called up has prepared him for his next opportunity with the big club. Moreover, he sounds as though he's maturing in his approach to pitching: "I'm finally starting to realize that I don't have to overthrow every pitch, and that I can stay in a certain range," Purcey told News 10.

If there is one thing that you could accuse Purcey of in his first two starts, it was overthrowing, as he walked 11 in 7.1 inning over those first two starts. Here's hoping that his stated realization translates into a palpably better performance when the next opportunity comes his way.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

All-Star Breakin' 2: Electric Sooze-aloo

God help us, we stuck it out to the bitter end of last night's ridiculously long All-Star Game.

Well, almost. Some time between 1:30 and 1:45 we nodded off, but thanks to the magic of the PVR, we were able to rewind and watch the dramatic sac fly walkoff, then rush off to Sleepyland and continue on that dream where Monica Bellucci and Carla Gugino are fighting over us. (That's a pretty good one.)

In any case, here are the few random thoughts on last night's festivities that we've managed to pluck out of our sleep-deprived brain.

Blink and you missed Doc
As per usual, Roy Halladay was quick and efficient in his inning of work. In a four hour and fifty minute game, Doc saw the field for no more than five minutes, striking out Lance "Fat Elvis" Berkman and helped along by nice plays in the field by Ichiro (who could probably hit the high windows in a Tokyo skyscraper with a pebble - Hola Ichiro!) and Derek Jeter (we feel dirty even saying that).

We were also treated to extended footage of Doc getting pointers on throwing his cutter from Mariano Rivera which goes to show that apparently Sal Fasano's guidance on his cutter grip really didn't stick.

Finally, Doc clarified his comments from the other day, noting that we Blue Jays fans shouldn't be concerned with the possibility of him leaving. (Damn you Stoeten! You're right again!) Blair covers Halladay's response to the mass panic nicely in his piece...although wasn't Snappy one of the guys stirring the pot in the first place?

Hall of Famers and their caps
We actually kinda liked the whole introduction segment, where every Living Hall of Famer was dragged onto the field to demonstrate that Yankee Stadium (rebuilt in 1976, by the way) is the most historic history-thingy in history. But one thing that made us laugh were the shenanigans with the Honoured Members and their ballcaps.

At first, there was Wade Boggs, who wears a Red Sox cap on his plaque, wore his Yankee cap during the celebrations. "That's kinda cheap", we thought. But then we saw Dave Winfield, who aside from wanting noise, apparently wants to wear as many caps as he can. He wore his Padres cap, but then pulled out a Yankees cap and feigned like he was about to put it on for the sake of the New York fans.

The pièce de résistance was Mike Toth's hero Gary Carter, who wore an Expos cap, but flashed his Mets cap when the camera was on him. In Yankee Stadium, no less.

What a maroon.

Josh Hamilton is an we've been told a million times
It would be perfectly fine and dignified of everyone if they would just lay off the whole Josh Hamilton story by about 25%. Yeah, we're pretty impressed with what he has done to rehabilitate himself, and he's a heckuva a ballplayer. But the constant reminders of how far he's come, and how he's totally clean and sober, and ashamed of his tattoos, and how he loves Jesus and America too is a bit much. Yeah, it's a nice story, but by building him up like this, we can't help but feel like there's a spectacular fall coming on the other side. We're not wishing for it at all...but we just know that the same people who are praising his good Christian transformation will crap all over him if he were ever to slip.

Give it a rest.

Terry Francona has learned nothing about managing an All-Star pitching staff
So, that was a bit tense last night for the AL, wasn't it? Given the debacle that was the 2002 All-Star tie in Milwaukee, you'd think that Tito might have thought about keeping a pitcher like Joe Saunders around for extra innings in case he needed him. We have no idea how many pitches that Scott Kazmir had in him last night, but if the game had gone a few innings later and had ended in another tie in spite of the fact that "it counts", then Francona should have been permanently barred from managing in any All-Star Game ever. Or maybe he should be forced to run into the Wrigley field outfield fence at top speed. Again

Monday, July 14, 2008

All-Star Breakin'

Dudes! It's the All-Star Extravaganza!

This is where we separate ourselves from the majority of hacks out there. You won't hear us bitching about this element of the Midseason Classic, or about who got snubbed or what guy got voted in by the obviously stupid stupid stupid stupid corrupt inept fans who shouldn't be allowed to pick the starters because they are stupid and have no access and are stupid and don't really know what's going on with the game of baseball because they are stupidly ignorant to all of the stuff that the writers and broadcasters know through their access but that they don't pass on to the fans because they are too stupid to get it and therefore shouldn't even be allowed to watch the game.

And moreover, you won't hear us complain that the game sucks because it's stupid because it doesn't count but then it counts but it shouldn't count because it doesn't count.

Those guys try to take the fun out of everything.

We love the All-Star Game. Some nights, when we close our eyes, we still see Fred Lynn hammering that Atlee Hammaker pitch into the seats at old Comiskey Park for the only grand slam in All-Star Game history.

Or our patron saint Dave Stieb getting the start in 1983 and 1984. (Sadly, it sounds as though Cliff Lee's mirage-like first half will lead to him getting the start for the AL this year over Roy Halladay.)

We remember sitting in anticipation as they went through the introductions, waiting for the Blue Jays representatives to be introduced. (Hey look! It's Jesse Barfield! Tony Fernandez! The Shaker, Lloyd Moseby!)

Tell me that doesn't count for something.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

A very productive one-third of an inning for Rios

If nothing else, his fielding percentage in All-Star games is 1.000.

Was it wrong that we started rooting for the NL to tie it up so that Alex could get a shot?

And to think, we had a bilious rant half-written, with in-depth plans to start a We Hate Jim Leyland blog until he managed to slip Rios in for the last out.

Now we know why Orioles fans booed Cito Gaston for years.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Doc don't need your pity vote

After initially spending the weekend trying to figure out how to program our computer to vote a million times an hour for Roy Halladay in the MLB's Final Vote tomfoolery, we've heeded the man's wishes to take some time off (hat tip to Blair) and mourn the loss of his appendix.

Besides, the only computer program we know how to write is the one in Basic that makes our name scroll up the screen infinitely.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

All-Star rants: There’s no fun allowed in the press box

With the announcement this weekend of the All Star Game rosters, the mainstream baseball press is in full-on gripe mode about Mid-Season Classic.

The problem is that too many of these professional grouches look at the All Star starters and reserves, identify the deficiencies, and then take the remarkable leap that the game itself is useless and should be scrapped or completely rethought so as to make it matter more. This is the sort of thinking that brought about the “It Counts” following after the 2004 All-Star game tie debacle, and yet many of these same writers and broadcasters gripe about that without a trace of irony.

Witness Dan Patrick and Keith Olbermann’s Grumpy Old Men routine on Monday’s Big Show on ESPN Radio (the archive is on iTunes). Olbermann suggests that the game is a bore, and should be more like the offensive shoot-outs in the NHL and NBA All-Star games, or moreover, that the game should just be one big Home Run Derby. These are the rantings of someone who has clearly lost touch with reality, and forgotten how much more compelling the MLB game is than either of these dull displays, which in no way resemble the sports they are supposed to be celebrating.

The media whinge and complain about all of the mistakes made by the fans in the voting for the starters, and begrudge the fans inclusion in the process. The writers, in particular, seem to believe that their expertise should be used to choose the starters, in addition to the bang-up job they do on selecting nearly all of MLB’s significant awards. (Like Bartolo Colon’s 2005 Cy Young Award, for instance.)

Ultimately, the All-Star game is an exhibition which doesn’t need to have any significant meaning. It needs to be fun for the fans. We love the All-Star, and some of our favorite baseball memories came from the marginalia around the game.

  • Mario Soto wearing white shoes – which were strictly forbidden by the Reds at that time - to start the 1983 game.
  • Dave Stieb, Jimmy Key and David Wells getting the All-Star starting assignment as Blue Jays.
  • Fred Lynn taking Atlee Hammaker deep for the first grand slam in All-Star history in 1983.
  • Pedro Martinez striking out five of the six batters he faced in 1999 (at Fenway, no less), including home run heroes McGwire and Sosa.

Moreover, the talk over the next week on who should have been included and who didn’t deserve the nod shouldn’t be taken as some exasperating chore. It gives us all the chance to talk baseball, and really, what’s more fun than that?

Monday, July 2, 2007

Canada Day Hangover

A few random thoughts to consider while we scrub down the walls and clean up the broken beer bottles and stray spent fireworks of the streets.

Hearty Congrats: To Alex Rios on being named to the AL All Stars. Funny how a guy who's been perpetual trade bait for three or four years now has proven himself to be the Jays' best player for much of last season (pre-staph infection) and all of this season.

Halladay's Snub
: In truth, this has not been the most stellar start by Doc over the past few years, and the list of other pitchers included thus far is actually pretty unassailable. However, Doc could still be voted into the lineup to keep Alex Rios company, if all of the computers in New England and Japan suddenly go on the fritz.

A.J.'s DL Madness: Was he rushed back too soon, or is he simply being hypersensitive about the shoulder? The lack of velocity on his fastball last time out would indicate that the Jays likely should have given him an extra few days to recover, which begs the question: why didn't they?

J.P. in the Boston Globe: In case you need a respite from the Ken Fidlins or Richard Griffins of the world, here's an interview with J.P. from the Boston Globe on July 1.

Monday, April 30, 2007

King of the Hill

How good was Aaron Hill this April? Take a look at the stats to see where he ranks among AL second basemen:
  1. 1st in hits (29)

  2. 3rd in RBIs (17)

  3. 2nd in runs (16)

  4. 3rd in home runs (5)

  5. 4th in batting average (.312)

  6. 1st in doubles (5)
Update: Yesterday Aaron Hill was named co-winner (along with Roy Halladay) of the Player of the Month Award for the Jays.